EL CAJON, Calif. – Cade Gotta delivered a timely 2-run homer and Mark Vasquez pitched effectively for 6.1 innings as the San Diego Christian College Hawks defeated Westmont 6-2 in the GSAC Tournament opener at Grossmont College.
The GSAC Player of the Year had a great day at the plate. Gotta went 3-for-4 with 3 RBI and his tenth homer of the season. His homer extended SDC's lead to 5-2 after the Warriors scored in the inning before to make it a 3-2 game.
With the win, the Hawks will advance to the next round of the GSAC Tournament to play against Vanguard, who won a 1-0 thriller in 11 innings over The Master's college.
Vasquez allowed seven hits and two runs while striking out two batters to improve to 8-3 on the season. Steven Bunnell relieved Vasquez going 2.2 innings allowing just two hits and striking out three.
Defense played a role in the beginning of the game as each team turned an inning-ending double play to prevent runs from scoring.
The Hawks scored first in the contest as they plated three in the bottom of fourth. Gilbert Viera singled up the middle to score Jeff Lusardi. Christian Johnson made it 2-0 as he singled to left and scored Viera. Gotta completed the scoring in the inning with a single to right driving home Dawson Jones. A great throw by the right fielder tagged pinch runner Chris Gonzalez at home as he tried to score after Jones.
Westmont made the game closer as they scored two in the seventh. The Hawks got out of a jam as they kept two Warrior runners on the bases.
Gotta answered the two scored in the top of the inning with his homerun. The Hawks scored three in the inning as Viera hit a sac fly to score Chad Erickson.
SDC tallied 11 hits for their six runs while the Warriors totaled eight hits for the two runs.
This marked the sixth win in seven chances against Westmont for SDC. The Hawks improved to 38-16 while the Warriors fall to 34-17.
The Hawks will take on the Lions at noon tomorrow. Winner will advance to the championship game while the loser of that contest will play against Westmont who defeated The Master's College in an elimination game of the loser's bracket.